Deborah McGlinchey has endured the dreaded news that she has breast cancer, not once, but twice.
The 39 year-old mum-of-one was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 and earlier this year she was diagnosed with the illness a second time. She underwent a full mastectomy and reconstructive surgery at the end of January 2013.
“What I went through in January was by far the most traumatic experience, both physically and mentally, that I have ever gone through,” recalled Deborah.
After recovering from her first battle with breast cancer, Deborah decided she wanted to improve upon her fitness and joined the Old Library Trust running club ‘Bolt’.
“I couldn’t run the length of myself when I started with ‘Bolt’ but I really enjoyed the craic,” she said.
“I didn’t know that many people in the group but now I’d regard many of the people I have met as friends for life.”
At the height of her training, Deborah was running more than five miles twice a week but her good fortune came crashing down around her once again when she was diagnosed with breast cancer a second time earlier this year.
“I’d been in for a routine check-up when the consultant noticed something wasn’t right.
“After the results came back the consultant delivered the news I had been dreading - I had breast cancer again.
“I can’t even begin to describe to you what that felt like. I was back on my feet again, running with ‘Bolt’ and enjoying life and then wham - I had breast cancer again.”
Deborah had been in training for the Omagh half marathon before being diagnosed with cancer a second time and as a result of her treatment she was unable to take part.
However, in a gesture of pure kindness, over 100 members of ‘Bolt’ completed the race for her and club member Nicola Mullen even donated her race medal to Deborah.
“I can’t stress how thankful I am to everyone at ‘Bolt’.
“It was so generous what they did and what Nicola Mullen did was one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me.”
To read the full story of Deborah’s battle with breast cancer and how ‘Bolt’ members have helped her cope read this weekend’s Sunday Journal.